A look back: the news of January ‘80, ‘95 and ‘10

It is always interesting to look back to see how things have changed – or not! The Bowen Island Archives have the complete run of the Undercurrents from 1975 to present. To read past Undercurrents or follow up on information please contact us at bihistorians@telus.net or 604.947.2655

40 years ago: Undercurrent 1980 

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The Undercurrent reveals important items for the new Regional Director to accomplish in 1980:

1. Install lights “at every road or junction on Bowen Island.”

2. Establish a park

3. Create senior citizens housing

4. Get dogs under control. “They are just about as numerous and as potentially vicious as ever.” 

5. Provide more police protection. “There is a growing number of break-ins which is shameful and not necessary.”

6. Better maintenance of roads and elimination of danger spots.

7. “Goad the Urban Transit Authority to get a Fastbus to connect with our ferry and carry us to the Seabus with a stop at Park Royal – and back again.”

7. “Have words with Beastly Tel to have Bowen Island included in the Extended Area Dialing.”

8. “How’s about a late ferry run?”

9. “A detailed report of the Regional Director’s aims and accomplishments at least once a month for Undercurrent readers. (Undercurrent is bought by but perhaps two families on Bowen Island – and perhaps they read smuggled copies in the privacy of their biffies.)”

25 years ago: Undercurrent 1995

Ferry fare hike raising hackles: “Bowen commuters paid more to get to the mainland this week, and BC Ferries says it’s all part of a five-year plan to deal with fare inequities in their system.” Single ticket adult fare increased from $4.00 to $4.25 and a book of 10 tickets increased from $107.50 to $115.20. 

The Island Neighbors column written by Lois Meyers-Carter highlights past January Bowen events.

1991 – Tribute was paid to Rosa Helenius for her outstanding service at the Post Office, the Hydro crew, librarian Christine Miller and volunteers – all who kept services going during the snowstorms.  

1992 – The captain of the Howe Sound Queen was suspended for 10 days without pay for the ferry “hard landing” at Horseshoe Bay. A number of Islanders were injured in that incident. Business opportunities available that month included the Bowen island Pub and the Whirling Dervish Coffee House. Johanna’s Restaurant announced its new non-smoking policy.

1993 – Local groups were trying to sort out property boundaries for the Cenotaph. In response to the needs of emergency planners Bowen’s house numbering project was underway. 

1994 – The presence of arsenic levels in well water of Queen Charlotte Heights was the big news. The Memorial Garden Society completed their archway and were looking ahead to opening later in the spring. 

10 years ago: January 2010

“If you could wave a magic wand….” wishes for 2010

Lorraine Ashdown – “1. A transportation service for getting kids/adults home safely after 10 o’clock at night. 2. A last ferry departure from the mainland at 11 p.m. 3. Better, much better, more visible, more concerned, more connected, more community-minded local government! 4. A community hall/arts and culture building.”

Paul Hooson – “If I had just one wish, it would be that peace, understanding, love good health and generosity flourish. I would prefer to have three wishes, though, if that was allowed. 

My first wish would be that the major fundraising for a new community hall and arts centre be substantially completed, with the planned facility being one that the whole community, no matter what your cultural or recreational preference, could enthusiastically embrace. 

My second would have to be for a National Park on Bowen to become a reality, and encompass a substantial portion of the foreshore and sensitive ecological portion of Cape Roger Curtis. 

My third wish is that real progress be made on the affordable housing front, and that walls and roofs will soon appear for those who need them most.”

© Copyright Bowen Island Undercurrent


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